Voting method - United States

United States
Voting method
Postal e-voting

Regulations for voting from abroad has not changed since 1986, except the introduction of e-voting.


The Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) was enacted by Congress in 1986. UOCAVA requires that the states and territories allow certain groups of citizens to register and vote absentee in elections for Federal offices. In addition, most states and territories have their own laws allowing citizens covered by UOCAVA to register and vote absentee in state and local elections as well.

Voting from Abroad: International IDEA Handbook (page 27):

'For its presidential elections of 2000, the United States was the first country to test, in a highly selective and very controlled way, a mechanism for external voting using e-voting, a method that is not only electronic but also genuinely remote or distant.'

Absentee Voting Information for U.S. Citizens Abroad:

"Overseas voters have a number of options for returning completed ballots:

- Local mail – If you have a reliable mail service to the United States, put your ballot in the mail with appropriate international postage.
- U.S. Embassy Diplomatic Pouch – You or another person can drop off your ballot request (FPCA) or completed ballot at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate for return to the United States. It must be addressed to your local election officials and have sufficient U.S. postage, or be in a postage-paid envelope. A postage-paid envelope is available on the FVAP website. Contact the U.S. embassy voting assistance officer or visit the embassy’s website for specific instructions.
- Fax, Email, or Internet – Some states permit electronic transmission of completed ballots. Consult the Voting Assistance Guide for options in your state.
- Express Courier Service – If time is short or local mail unreliable, you can use professional courier services such as FedEx, DHL, or UPS at your own expense. NOTE: FedEx does not deliver to P.O. boxes."